La Medicina was conceived by the two founders as a home for training and practice, as well as a place to share the medicine with the small groups of people who feel called to visit. It is a labour of love and dedication, not a commercial venture. La Medicina has 4 full time workers with full social benefits. There is also 24/7 private security. Although La Medicina is run by Treeglobe S.A.C., a registered limited company, it‘s operated as a non-profit in spirit and reality.
The first piece of land was bought in 2011, and was called Monte Inglés, a name given by its Peruvian owners over 20 years before. Incidentally, Chris is English and Nori is naturalised British, and they initially used Monte Inglés as the name for their center which, although generally liked, caused problems with some locals, who assumed they had in a colonial manner imposed an English stamp upon the Peruvian soil. In November 2015 the name ‘La Medicina’ came to them. It is simple, but expresses all they wish to say.
Peruvian red tape and bureaucratic procedure can be challenging, and patience is a necessity. To obtain permission to build a retreat center in a protected area, it took over 25 face to face meetings with Proyecto Huallaga, the local governmental environmental agency. Now a much better relationship has been forged, as the government have realised that La Medicina genuinely wants to protect and conserve the forest. In recognition of these ongoing reforestation efforts, we have given legal guardianship of 12 hectares of land that falls within the Cordiellera Escalera National Park Zone of High Protection.
Over the years, there have been a number of landslides at La Medicina, some of them quite serious. These have been caused by a combination of the extreme rains of El Niño, and deforestation from previous owners of land in the area.
One landslide area has been reforested with bamboo and Bobinsana, a beautiful medicinal tree whose roots are able to thrive on very rocky soil. In the more serious zones, 600 Renaco Colorado, another medicinal tree, have been planted. Reforestation is not easy and its costly, for instance over 4 tonnes of fertile soil had to be carried up the mountain to give those seedlings the best chance of growing but not many have survived.
Liiving on La Medicina is to learn from, breathe and grow with nature.